Jay Z just honored Chester Bennington and opened up about mental health awareness

Chester Bennington’s death on July 20th stunned Linkin Park fans. That includes Jay Z, who collaborated with Bennington back in 2004. On Friday, and Jay Z gave a beautiful tribute to Bennington by performing one of their mashups, “Numb/Encore,” at BBCLive Lounge.

Because Bennington struggled with depression and ended up taking his own life, Jay Z also spoke to BBC Radio 1 about the importance of caring for one’s mental health.

"Mental health is a real thing," he told BBC Radio 1. "You never know what people are going through and you think that because they’re performers and he’s sold millions of records… that doesn’t equate to happiness."

Mr. Carter also got a little personal. He explained why he chose to perform “Numb/Encore” to honor Bennington.

"A lot of people, we don’t deal with what’s happening to us, we just keep going," the rapper continued. "Especially for a performer like that, you just start numbing yourself. You become numb. He’s singing it, he’s telling you: become numb."

It’s clear from the video of his performance that Jay Z is still affected by Bennington’s suicide. As the song starts, he says, “Dedicate this song to Chester. “It’s hard not to get teary-eyed while he raps the lyrics to his song “Encore” over the iconic Linkin Park song “Numb.”


Jay Z also opened up about how both performers and men specifically need to pay more attention to their mental health.

He even touched on how toxic masculinity and what we think it means to ‘be a man’ can get in the way of one’s self-care.

"Hopefully his death wakes a lot of people up and a lot of people start taking care of themselves. Men, we have this bravado, we have to armor up. Nah man, you have to take care of yourself—physically and spiritually."

That’s powerful stuff coming from Jay Z. Male rappers are so often expected to be tough and infallible. We’re glad he’s showing his vulnerable side.

Watch the full interview here:


Jay Z’s tribute is so important and powerful. Chester’s widow, Talinda Bennington, recently shared her gratitude for all the tributes people made in his honor.

Hopefully, Jay Z’s message about needing to take care of oneself and seek help when you’re struggling will help to de-stigmatize depression. The more people talk about mental health struggles and self-care, the better. It’s not always possible to simply “get that dirt off your shoulder” and keep going.